Jobs That Pay More Than A Teacher

Teacher pay: Which states pay teachers the most?

The average public school teacher salary for 2017-2018 was $60,477, according to the National Education Association, the largest teacher’s union in the United States. That number was up from $59,660 in 2016-17. The NEA estimated that the average salary for this school year (2017-18) will be $61,730.

In the report, average teacher salaries ranged from a high in New York ($84,227), California ($80,680), and Massachusetts ($80,357), to a low in Mississippi ($44,926), West Virginia ($45,642) and Oklahoma ($46,300). 

The study showed that while salaries for classroom teachers went up an average of 11.5 percent from school year 2008-2009 to the estimated salaries for school year 2017-2018, when adjusted for inflation, overall teacher salaries decreased by 4.5 percent during that time period.

One-fifth of new public school educators leave the profession by the end of their first year of teaching, according to the NEA. Nearly half will leave within five years. 

Low starting wages and pay increases that fail to match others in jobs that require similar education and experience is often cited as a reason for leaving the job. 

In no state are teachers paid more than comparable college graduates, according to the Economic Policy Institute. The EPI reports that, on average, teachers make 77 percent of what other college graduates make.

While several organizations track teacher salaries by state, the numbers can be a bit different depending on the criteria used to gather the information. Some organizations include private schools in the calculation and some do not, for instance.

Here is a list of teacher salaries for 2017-2018 from the NEA:

  1. Alabama: $52,285
  2. Alaska: $74,977
  3. Arizona: $48,723
  4. Arkansas: $51,791
  5. California: $80,680
  6. Colorado: $56,010
  7. Connecticut: $74,517
  8. Delaware: $65,125
  9. District of Columbia: $76,486
  10. Florida: $48,526
  11. Georgia: $59,185
  12. Hawaii: $57,866
  13. Idaho: $51,475
  14. Illinois: $65,721
  15. Indiana: $61,082
  16. Iowa: $59,505
  17. Kansas: $50,925
  18. Kentucky: $55,610
  19. Louisiana: $52,876
  20. Maine: $54,071
  21. Maryland: $73,572
  22. Massachusetts: $80,357
  23. Michigan: $61,911
  24. Minnesota: $69,461
  25. Mississippi: $45,497
  26. Missouri: $51,647
  27. Montana: $57,338
  28. Nebraska: $54,377
  29. Nevada: $57,761
  30. New Hampshire: $57,883
  31. New Jersey: $74,457
  32. New Mexico: $49,634
  33. New York: $84,384
  34. North Carolina: $51,231
  35. North Dakota: $55,242
  36. Ohio: $61,167
  37. Oklahoma: $48,431
  38. Oregon: $66,552
  39. Pennsylvania: $69,303
  40. Rhode Island: $76,887
  41. South Carolina: $53,094
  42. South Dakota: $49,277
  43. Tennessee: $53,295
  44. Texas: $56,736
  45. Utah: $57,854
  46. Vermont: $61,294
  47. Virginia: $54,122
  48. Washington: $60,005
  49. West Virginia: $47,390
  50. Wisconsin: $55,726
  51. Wyoming: $60,485

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